Dec 19, 2009

Snow Candy And Speckled Chickens

I got my book "Circle Round, raising children in the goddess traditions" in the mail the day before yesterday and started reading it immediately. I cannot begin to tell you how great this book is! I wasn't very far into reading when I came across one of the wonderful traditions, that I felt tears coming to my eyes. It was about snow candy, I had all but forgotten making snow candy (with real maple syrup) at grandma's and grandpa's house every winter.

My grandparents have been in my thoughts a lot lately, I'm not sure why. It seems that I miss them a whole lot more the older I get. It was okay to be that dorky little kid, clumsy, opinionated but even then I loved getting in the dirt and working around the garden with them. (they even let me have one of their banty hens as pet and never batted an eye when I took "Blackie" for a walk in grandpa's old fishing basket, you know...the old wicker type with a square in the top, she fit just perfectly.) There were even a couple times in my life when I was very ill that I yearned for grandma's loving hands and soothing voice to be there to comfort me.

I never told mom about the snow candy (or the chicken, for she was deathly afraid of them), I realized even at that age, what reaction she'd have. It was a special tradition just between grandma, grandpa and me. Now days, as a parent, I would never advocate pouring maple syrup on snow and eating it but life seems so different now than it did back then. Here is an updated recipe that is probably much safer for consumption.

Snow Candy

* 1 cup real maple syrup
* 1/4 cup butter
* Shaved ice (or vanilla ice cream)

* Heat the syrup and butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to avoid a boil over. 

* The mixture is ready 6 to 7 minutes after it boils (220 to 234 degrees on a candy thermometer). It should stiffen when dripped onto a plate.

* Remove from heat and cool for 2 minutes before pouring over shaved ice  or ice cream. It cools so quickly and kids can eat it right away.


Pagangracecat said...

Hello Liz, thanks for your comment on my blog. Have linked into yours and YES - Circle Round is a FABULOUS book. My pagan sister in law bought me a copy some years back and there are masses of lovely rituals in there and ways of embracing children in any traditions as a family. Like the adaptation for snow candy. My son would like that too. We could do the traditional one as we have a bit of snow here at present but your recipe sounds a better bet.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Up here in Canada, we call it maple syrup candy and the trick is to find a nice patch of FRESH snow!! Lovely!

Rue said...

I think of my grandmother often, and she's been gone for 20 years now. She taught me to love tea and gardening. There are time I would love to sit and chat with her now.

Thanks for the story about your good times with your grandparents!